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Blue Fly Challenge Entry
I figured I might as well enter the Blue Fly Challenge in the most fish category. I fish below my house in the Palouse river in Eastern Washington state. It is by no stretch of the imagination a blue ribbon stream. It's warm and gets pretty low and green in the summer. The native norther pikeminnow and chiselmouth are incredibly prolific though and they will go after just about anything that looks edible. I think the competition is pretty fierce so I figured a blue fly would work great. I've included a picture of the flies I've been tying, and most of the fish have the hook visible as well. I use three strands of krystal flash UV for a tail, a blue yarn body. I often use red thread and tie off midbody, so there is a red band behind the reverse hackle. If not I use brown. I use partridge, in green and natural, as well as pheasant for the hackle. They are size 16 in the picture but I also tie them in 12 when I decide I've had enough little guys on the line.
I've sent a separate email with pictures of 35 that I caught over two days and about three hours of fishing. Tonight I caught the last 21 fish all at the head of one riffle in about an hour. I got in the water and fished within ten feet for an hour with a bite on nearly every cast, but alas not a fish every time (the young-of-the-year go crazy over the fly but can't get it in their mouth). Some of them have really bad scale parasites/fungus which leads me to believe that they are pretty overcrowded and competition is really high. I'm looking forward to seeing how long it takes to break 100 or 150. When I was a kid I caught 120 in an afternoon in this river, so anything is possible but I am limited by having to do my PhD and not fish all the time.
“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” – Benjamin Franklin
"Study to be quiet." - Izaak Walton 1653
"Be sure in casting, that your fly fall first into the water, for if the line fall first, it scares or frightens the fish..." Col. Robert Venables 1662
As age slows my pace, I will become more like the heron.
The hooks are sharp.
The coffee's hot.
The fish are slippery when wet.
Beware of the Dogma